This floating castle appears to be from an enchanted fable, but in actuality it is Europe's best preserved Renaissance water castle.
Constructed in 1891 in the Bronx – before the borough was officially part of New York City – this French Gothic structure is one of the original buildings on Fordham University’s campus. Named after the founder of Fordham, the structure is not only the site of terrifying final exams, but was one of the filming locations for The Exorcist.
Built for the growing institution once known as St. John’s College, Hughes Hall was run by the Jesuits, a Catholic order, and the four-story hall would eventually become Fordham Prep in 1937. It would hold this distinction until 1973, when the preparatory school outgrew the vintage building and moved to a large modern structure on the other side of Fordham’s campus.
In this transitional period for the building, its basement was actually used as a set for filming parts of The Exorcist, the cult classic about a young girl possessed by demons. If being the set for a horror flick wasn’t enough, there have also been reports of an apparition of a young boy wandering Hughes’ halls—though he seems to steer clear from crawling on the ceiling.
Transforming into the Gabelli School of Business in 2012, Hughes Hall now serves a multitude of Fordham business students throughout the academic year. The only visible haunting occurring these days? Students fearing the dreaded pop quiz 👻
Written by: Seamus McMahon
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